As human beings, there are some things we should just know in 2014: The earth is round. Fire is hot. Ryan Gosling is sexy. This also applies to major news stories, particularly ones that remain the spotlight for months and months.
I mention this because earlier this week local celebrity boxing promoter Damon Feldman, who recently came under fire for booking George Zimmerman, revealed that he was not aware of Zimmerman’s controversial past. He said, “When I learned everything, it was so bad. I only heard the verdict.”
This is bafflingly stupid. You would have to be living on Mars, in a cave, with your fingers in your ears to have missed even the most basic facts about the Trayvon Martin murder, which permeated news coverage for months.
Alas, Feldman—though astonishingly dimwitted—is not the dumbest person to have ever made headlines. Here, 10 people who are dumber than Damon Feldman, including three local contenders.
1. Jessica Simpson. She’s sort of the industry standard of dumb—even a decade after her infamous confusion about tuna.
2. Sarah Lockard. You may recall Sarah’s infamous email to local restaurateurs. She wanted them to host her family for Christmas dinner and she’d give them rave reviews on AroundMainline.com. Her ethically ignorant move earned her a lot of negative attention—including mentions on Gawker. Let’s hope she ascribes to the school of thought that says “no such thing as bad publicity.”
3. Justin Bieber. Dude once called it the “sixteenth” chapel.
4. Dayna Morales. Remember this one? The Jersey waitress claimed a couple refused to tip her and left a homophobic note but, after she began receiving donations from sympathetic citizens, had to admit that she made the whole thing up. Dumb and rude.
5. All Darwin Award Winners. This prestigious honor goes to those who have contributed to human evolution by self-selecting themselves out of the gene pool. In laymen’s terms: People who are so dumb that they killed themselves by being dumb. They dumbed themselves to death.
6. Donald Trump. Presented with heavy eye rolling and deep sighing. .
7. Philadelphia Weekly’s fact-checking staff. Last week, the team at PW posited the theory that a musician from Phoenixville was secretly Philly’s biggest rising musical star because of his suspiciously enormous Twitter following. The story generated Twitter commentary from national music writers and a lengthy takedown from Citypaper’s Emily Guendelsberger that showcased how PW kind of missed the most interesting part of the story. (Full disclosure: I was employed at Philadelphia Weekly from 2007 through 2010 in a variety of roles, including as fact-checker.)
8. Everyone tweeting #FuckCoke. When Coca-Cola aired a Super Bowl commercial featuring “America the Beautiful” sung in other languages, the nation’s true idiots flocked to Twitter to share their thoughts about why this was definitely not OK.
9. This guy. Last week, a Minnesota burglar was scared off by a really threatening beast: Big Mouth Billy Bass. According to police, “the would-be burglar left without stealing anything, including cash that had been left in "a very visible spot."
10. Sandy Hook conspiracy theorists. Whether it’s a distant relative on Facebook, a zany Twitter follower or just some lunatic on the subway, there’s always someone who will tell you that the media or the government set up Sandy Hook for a variety of reasons—everything from the taking the focus off ObamaCare to getting revenge for Israeli-American relations.
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